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Understanding and responding to changes in our operating environment over the four-year period of this corporate plan will influence our focus in supporting and positioning the APS workforce for the future.

Dynamic environment

Our operating environment is shaped by trends that impact on the wider APS including:

  • digital transformation and rapid advances in technology and connectivity that bring both opportunities and challenges
  • increased collaboration across all levels of government, and with stakeholders and citizens
  • heightened expectations of government and service delivery, combined with declining public trust in established institutions of governments
  • challenges in preserving the integrity of the public service in a complex global environment with geopolitical and economic instability
  • demographic shifts that are changing the APS workforce profile at the same time as the future of work is influencing the types of jobs and skills that will be required and valued in the competitive global marketplace.

Many of these issues are driving the work of the Independent Review of the APS, and form the basis for its recommendations on transformational change to ensure the APS remains fit-for-purpose into the future.

The Government is clear in its focus on supporting the economy and investment, service delivery, and APS performance.

In this environment, our role in ensuring the professionalism, integrity and effectiveness of the APS now and into the future remains key.

We will also facilitate the Government’s agenda to support the Pacific region, through our international relationships. The APS is seen as an exemplar of the effective and efficient delivery of public services. Countries in our region look to us for information that can assist them to improve their own public sectors. Our engagement with counterpart agencies builds Australia’s regional relationships and enhances the reputation of the APS.

Financial position

The financial approach of the Australian Public Service Commission is set out by the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013. We operate in a tight fiscal environment, receiving approximately 50 per cent of our resources through government appropriation and the remaining 50 per cent from government agencies, either on a fee-for-service basis or via subscriptions offered through memoranda of understanding.


Our stakeholders include the Government and ministers, APS secretaries and agency heads, and APS staff.

Last reviewed: 
21 August 2019